Efficacy of Spirulina Supplementation on Isometric Strength and Isometric Endurance of Quadriceps in Trained and Untrained Individuals – a comparative study

Original article


Sandhu J.S, Bhardwaj Dheera, Shenoy Shweta

Department of Sports Medicine and Physiotherapy, Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar-143005, Punjab, India.

IJMBS 2010, 2(2):79-86


Objective: To determine the efficacy of spirulina supplementation in enhancing isometric muscle strength and endurance in trained and untrained human beings.
Design: Placebo controlled, different subject experimental.
Setting: University level athletes and college students of Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, India.
Subjects: Forty healthy subjects (20 trained and 20 untrained) participated in the study and were divided into 4 groups, supplemented untrained (n=10), placebo untrained (n=10), supplemented trained (n=10), placebo trained (n=10). Subjects in both supplemented groups volunteered to take spirulina for 8 weeks in addition to their normal diet. Subjects in the placebo groups served as control and were given capsules filled with flour.
Outcome measures: Peak force, average force and fatigue index of dominant quadriceps muscle were measured before and after 8 weeks of supplementation. Values were compared within and between the groups.
Results: The results showed that supplementation with spirulina at the dose studied were effective in increasing peak force (p<0.01), average force (p<0.01) and decreasing fatigue index (p<0.01) using paired t-test comparison at the end of 8 weeks. Significant group and supplementation effects were also found with ANOVA analysis for peak and average force. However no significant effect (p>0.05) was found between the groups with ANOVA in decreasing fatigue index.
Conclusion: Spirulina for 8 weeks is effective in increasing the isometric muscle strength and isometric muscle endurance. Spirulina supplementation with training was found to be better than the spirulina only and training only in increasing muscle strength but no group was found to be better in increasing muscular endurance.

Keywords: Spirulina – Muscle Strength – Fatigue – Sports Nutrition

Link/DOI: http://journals.sfu.ca/ijmbs/index.php/ijmbs/article/view/51/146